Serpentine Cinema presents ROM, Menelaos Karamaghiolis’ award-winning 1989 documentary, hailed as “a turning point and landmark for Greek documentary film history.”
In 1979, the UN recognised the Romani tribe by its ancestral name, ROM. A decade later, this daring documentary pioneered in using the term for the first time in the Greek public sphere and attempted to give a true picture of the Romani people in Europe, following four different paths expressed by four narrators.
The Teacher presents the roots of the Roma, analysing rare historical references as though reading from the margins of history. The Photographer documents in pictures the present reality of a people who have never had a written tradition or an official history. Tamara guides us through ancient myths, stories, and terrors that express an entire common history, while Aima introduces us to the gaze of a new generation that looks to the future, seeking a new identity tied to the present day.
Presented in collaboration with Close-Up.
Supported by Rodeo, London/Piraeus.
Kostas Stasinopoulos, Curator, Live Programmes
- Artist Bio
Menelaos Karamaghiolis is a filmmaker who works in Athens, producing feature films, documentaries, artist films, installations and radio-movies which star real-life neglected heroes and transcend frontiers and stereotypes to serve as an essential tool for dialogue and social change. His films have been screened globally and won many awards internationally: Karamaghiolis’ feature documentary ROM (1989) was called “a turning point for Greek documentary films” and “a masterpiece that must become a classic of the history of cinema.” His fiction film BLACK OUT (p.s. RED OUT) (1998) was hailed as “the first post-modern Greek film” while J.A.C.E. – Just Another Confused Elephant (2012) was included in 52 international festivals and received eleven awards.
Karamaghiolis pioneered the first Greek interactive documentaries, MEETING WITH REMARKABLE PEOPLE (12 feature films, 180 short films). He is the founder of Døcumatism, a group of artists, educators, researchers, and filmmakers who aim to find solutions and raise awareness about crucial social issues through the power of cinematography. Døcumatism is based in the neighbourhood of Kypseli in Athens, a formerly upper-class neighbourhood that has been home to migrant communities for the past twenty years. The artistic initiatives taken by Døcumatism have transformed this neighbourhood into an experimental cultural hotspot. Karamaghiolis is currently working on film installations and live events for the ongoing collective community projects the AfroGreeks and Greekies. His work has been shown at international institutions such as the National Museum of Contemporary Art Athens, the Venice Biennale, Rodeo, Haus N Athen, and the Centre d’Art Contemporain Genève, among others.